• John Rostill

    1942 - 1973

    John Rostill (1942 - 1973)

    Born in Kings Norton, Birmingham, England, John Rostill attended Rutlish School in south London (1953–59). He worked with several artists before joining the Shadows, including Bournemouth band the Interns – nowadays sometimes confused with Welsh band the Interns, who were based in London at this time signed with Tito Burns Agency; in fact, they were […]

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  • Ian Samwell

    1937 - 2003

    Ian Samwell (1937 - 2003)

    In 1958, Ian Samwell heard Harry Webb performing at the 2i’s Coffee Bar in Soho. This led to him joining Webb’s group as a guitarist. Shortly afterwards, the group was renamed Cliff Richard and The Drifters who later became Cliff Richard and The Shadows. They signed a recording contract with EMI’s Columbia Records and Samwell wrote […]

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  • Peter Skellern

    1947 - 2017

    Peter Skellern (1947 - 2017)

    Peter Skellern was born in Bury, Lancashire. He attended Derby High School, playing the organ at St Michael’s Church in Bolton during his early years, and studied piano at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He later joined the pop groups Harlem and March Hare. Skellern’s first song to become a hit was “You’re a […]

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  • Jack Kinney

    1909 - 1992

    Jack Kinney (1909 - 1992)

    According to Jeff Lenburg’s assessment of him, Jack Kinney was a veteran animator, who spend most of his career working at Walt Disney Productions (later known as the Walt Disney Animation Studios). He directed the first film in the Donald Duck series to win the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film. Two other films […]

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  • Earle Hagen

    1919 - 2008

    Earle Hagen (1919 - 2008)

    Born in Chicago, Illinois, as a boy Earle Hagen moved with his family to Los Angeles, California, where he learned to play the trombone in junior high school, and graduated from Hollywood High School. At age 16, he left home to join traveling big bands, playing with Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman and Ray Noble. While […]

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  • Alex North

    1910 - 1991

    Alex North (1910 - 1991)

    Alex North managed to integrate his modernism into typical film music leitmotif structure, rich with themes. One of these became the famous song, “Unchained Melody”. Nominated for fifteen Oscars but unsuccessful each time, North is one of only two film composers to receive the Lifetime Achievement Academy Award, the other being Ennio Morricone. North’s frequent […]

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  • Lyle Wheeler

    1905 - 1990

    Lyle Wheeler (1905 - 1990)

    Lyle Reynolds Wheeler (February 2, 1905 – January 10, 1990) was an American motion picture art director. He received five Academy Awards — for Gone with the Wind (1939), Anna and the King of Siam (1946), The Robe (1953), The King and I (1956) and The Diary of Anne Frank (1959). Lyle Wheeler studied at the […]

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  • Leigh Harline

    1907 - 1969

    Leigh Harline (1907 - 1969)

    Leigh Adrian Harline (March 26, 1907 – December 10, 1969) was a film composer and songwriter. He was known for his “musical sophistication that was uniquely ‘Harline-esque’ by weaving rich tapestries of mood-setting underscores and penning memorable melodies for animated shorts and features.” Leigh Harline was born March 26, 1907, in Salt Lake City, Utah, the […]

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  • Lionel Newman

    1916 - 1989

    Lionel Newman (1916 - 1989)

    After serving an apprenticeship conducting and orchestrating live shows, Lionel Newman joined 20th Century Fox as a rehearsal pianist under the guidance of his brother, Alfred Newman, and by 1959, he had been promoted to Musical Director for Television there. This opened the doors to feature films. He was soon made vice president in charge […]

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  • Leonard Rosenman

    1924 - 2008

    Leonard Rosenman (1924 - 2008)

    Leonard Rosenman was born in Brooklyn, New York. After service in the Pacific with the United States Army Air Forces in World War II, he earned a bachelor’s degree in music from the University of California, Berkeley. He also studied composition with Arnold Schoenberg, Roger Sessions and Luigi Dallapiccola. Amongst Rosenman’s earliest film work was the […]

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  • Alexander Courage

    1919 - 2008

    Alexander Courage (1919 - 2008)

    Alexander Courage began as an orchestrator and arranger at MGM studios, which included work in such films as the 1951 Show Boat (“Life Upon the Wicked Stage” number), The Band Wagon (“I Guess I’ll Have to Change My Plan”), Gigi (the can-can for the entrance of patrons at Maxim’s), and the barn raising dance from […]

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  • Robert McKimson

    1910 - 1977

    Robert McKimson (1910 - 1977)

    Born in Denver, Colorado, Robert McKimson spent 10 years getting an art education. He then went to work for Walt Disney. He stayed with Disney’s studio for two years and then went to work for the Romer Grey Studio located in Altadena, California in 1930, a would-be animation shop started by the son of Western […]

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  • Paul Julian

    1914 - 1995

    Paul Julian (1914 - 1995)

    Paul Hull Husted (June 25, 1914 – September 5, 1995), better known as Paul Julian, was an American artist and animator, most noted for his work with Warner Bros.’ Looney Tunes short films. He worked primarily on director Friz Freleng’s Sylvester and Tweety Bird shorts. His warm and tightly-cropped urban scenes were also featured early […]

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  • Milt Franklyn

    1897 - 1962

    Milt Franklyn (1897 - 1962)

    Milt Franklyn moved from New York to Salt Lake City at the age of three, where he went to high school and finished one year at the University of Utah. He was the state junior tennis champion in Utah for six years. The next two years were spent at the University of California, Berkeley, then […]

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  • Edward Selzer

    1893 - 1970

    Edward Selzer (1893 - 1970)

    Edward “Eddie” Selzer (January 12, 1893 – February 22, 1970) was an American cartoon producer and head of Warner Bros. Cartoons from 1944 to 1958. He served in the US Navy and fought as a Golden Gloves boxer. He won a boxing exhibition for the Navy and was awarded with a weekend pass. While out […]

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  • Carl Stalling

    1891 - 1972

    Carl Stalling (1891 - 1972)

    Carl Stalling was born to Ernest and Sophia C. Stalling. His parents were from Germany; his father arrived in the United States in 1883. The family settled in Lexington, Missouri where his father was a carpenter. He started playing piano at six. By the age of 12, he was the principal piano accompanist in his […]

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  • Michael Maltese

    1908 - 1981

    Michael Maltese (1908 - 1981)

    In 1941, Michael Maltese was hired by Leon Schlesinger Productions, which three years later became Warner Bros. Cartoons, Inc. (Maltese had actually appeared on camera in the 1940 Porky Pig cartoon You Ought to Be in Pictures as a live-action guard at the Warner Bros. entrance gate, who winds up chasing the animated Porky around […]

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  • Fred Quimby

    1886 - 1965

    Fred Quimby (1886 - 1965)

    Frederick Clinton “Fred” Quimby (July 31, 1886 – September 16, 1965) was an American cartoon producer, best known as producing Tom and Jerry cartoons, for which he won seven Academy Awards. He was the film sales executive in charge of the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer cartoon studio, which included Tex Avery, as well as William Hanna and Joseph […]

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  • Marlin Perkins

    1905 - 1986

    Marlin Perkins (1905 - 1986)

    Marlin Perkins was born on March 28, 1905, in Carthage, Missouri, the youngest of three sons of Joseph Dudley Perkins and Mynta Mae (née Miller) Perkins. When he was 7 years old, his mother nursed him through a serious bout of pneumonia and sadly died of the illness herself. His grieving father sent his two […]

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  • George Sidney

    1916 - 2002

    George Sidney (1916 - 2002)

    George Sidney (October 4, 1916 – May 5, 2002) was an American film director and film producer who worked primarily at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Born in Long Island City, New York, Sidney began his career as an assistant at MGM until being assigned to direct the Our Gang comedies, which MGM had just acquired from Hal Roach, in […]

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  • Carol Haney

    1924 - 1964

    Carol Haney (1924 - 1964)

    Born Carolyn Haney in New Bedford, Massachusetts, she began to dance at age five and opened a dancing school in her teens. After high school, Haney left her home town for Hollywood and landed bit parts in movies until she was spotted by dancer/choreographer Jack Cole, becoming his dance partner and assistant from 1946–48. In […]

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  • Jay Velie

    1892 - 1982

    Jay Velie (1892 - 1982)

    Jay Velie was born in Denver, Colorado, on 16 May 1892. He became an actor and singer, first appearing on stage in 1912. His career on Broadway lasted for over fifty 50 years. Often he appeared with his sister, Janet. Velie’s first Broadway lead was in Little Jesse James (1923–24). Little Jessie James was written by […]

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  • Lily Pons

    1898 - 1976

    Lily Pons (1898 - 1976)

    Lily Pons successfully made her operatic debut in the title role of Léo Delibes’ Lakmé at Mulhouse in 1928 and went on to sing several coloratura roles in French provincial opera houses. She was discovered by the dramatic tenor/impresario Giovanni Zenatello, who took her to New York where she auditioned for Giulio Gatti-Casazza, the general […]

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  • Charles Eyton

    1871 - 1941

    Charles Eyton (1871 - 1941)

    Charles Eyton was the son of Henry and Eleanor Eyton. His sisters were singer/actress Vera (Veronica) Doria and writer Alice Eyton, who died of burns in 1929 after her masquerade costume was accidentally set alight. In 1900 Charles Eyton married Anna S. Cole. They were divorced in May 1901. On 3 September 1908, Charles Eyton married actress […]

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  • Lee Patterson

    1929 - 2007

    Lee Patterson (1929 - 2007)

    Lee Patterson was born in Vancouver, British Columbia. His birth name: Beverley Frank Atherly Patterson. After attending Ontario College of Art, Patterson moved to Britain, where he specialised in playing virile American types in British films. He appeared in a number of films during the 1950s and 1960s, including The Good Die Young (1954), Above […]

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  • Van Williams

    1934 - 2016

    Van Williams (1934 - 2016)

    Van Williams was born in Fort Worth, Texas, the son of Priscilla Anne (Jarvis) and Bernard Cardwell Williams. He grew up on a ranch outside Fort Worth and later studied animal husbandry and business at Texas Christian University. He moved to Hawaii in 1956 after differences with his father on how the ranch should be […]

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  • William Dozier

    1908 - 1991

    William Dozier (1908 - 1991)

    William Dozier (February 13, 1908 – April 23, 1991) was an American film and television producer and actor. Dozier was born in Omaha, Nebraska. He began in the film industry. With Joan Fontaine he co-founded Rampart Productions, responsible for Letter from an Unknown Woman (1948). He is best remembered as the executive producer and narrator of the Batman […]

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  • Mike Ilitch

    1929 - 2017

    Mike Ilitch (1929 - 2017)

    Mike Ilitch was born in Detroit in 1929 to Macedonian immigrants Sotir and Sultana Ilitch. His father was a tool-and-die maker. A graduate of Cooley High School in Detroit, Michigan, Ilitch entered the U.S. Marine Corps for four years. After his return home to Detroit, the Detroit Tigers offered him $3,000 if he would sign to play […]

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  • Bill Thompson

    1913 - 1971

    Bill Thompson (1913 - 1971)

    Born to vaudevillian parents, Bill Thompson began his career in Chicago radio, where his early appearances included appearances as a regular on Don McNeill’s morning variety series The Breakfast Club in 1934 and a stint as a choir member on the musical variety series The Sinclair Weiner Minstrels around 1937. While on the former series, […]

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  • Ward Kimball

    1914 - 2002

    Ward Kimball (1914 - 2002)

    While Ward Kimball was a brilliant draftsman, he preferred to work on comical characters rather than realistic human designs. Animating came easily to him and he was constantly looking to do things differently. Because of this, Walt Disney called Ward a genius in the book The Story of Walt Disney. While there were many talented […]

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